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Open Leadership: How Social Technology Can Transform the Way You Lead Hardcover – May 24, 2010
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An essential guide for leaders who want to use social media to be "open" while maintaining control
"Be Open, Be Transparent, Be Authentic" are the current leadership mantras-but companies often push back. Business is premised on the concept of control and yet the new world order demands openness-leaders do not know how to be open and be in control. This must-have resource will help the modern leader understand how to lead in the new open world-where blogging, twittering, facebooking, and digging are becoming the norm. the author lays out the steps that leaders must take to transform their organizations and themselves into being "open" -and exactly what that will mean.
- Shows how to use social media to become an open organization
- Offers basic advice for leaders who are adapting to the new era of openness in the marketplace
- The author Charlene Li is one of the foremost experts on social media and technologies
In easy-to-understand language, this book will help leaders orient themselves to social networking and other technological advances.
How Open Leadership Differs from Traditional Leadership
Content from author Charlene Li
More About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
Overall this is a good book providing a starting point for people looking to understand what social technology is and what it may mean for the enterprise. However, the state of social technology has moved beyond naming names and describing solutions to understanding the tough decisions and executing plans to realize value in the enterprise. Li tries to take on these issues, but falls short, keeping this from being a great book. This is a four star social technology book and a two and a half star leadership book.
Open Leadership has more to say about social technology than a leadership or management. It spends most of its pages talking about social technologies and its implementations. The leadership aspects to this book are not unique to social technologies You can see this in terms of her new rules for open leadership
1. Respect that your customers and employees have power
2. Share constantly to build trust
3. Nurture curiosity and humility
4. Hold openness accountable
5. Forgive failure
These rules are important, but they are not unique to social technology. In fact similar rules have been the subject of management books for the last 15 years. It is not that these are wrong, or bad advice, but these are things that students of management and leadership already know.Read more ›
The book "is about how leaders must let go to gain more," "open leadership" being defined as "having the confidence and the humility to give up the need to be in control while inspiring commitment from people to accomplish goals." The task is not easy, and Charlene is well aware that calls from various management experts for leaders to remodel their management styles for the last fifty years "have gone largely unanswered." Why does she feel she can succeed while so many have been preaching in the desert?
I see two main reasons why this book has a much higher chance of impact.
1) The context: "Giving up control is inevitable."
While many books on management have characterized the traits and mindset of open leaders along similar lines as Charlene does throughout her book, the reasons for people to change are structurally different. For the last fifty years, these reasons had somewhat of a normative undertone, ranging from becoming a more charismatic person to preparing for an undefined future.Read more ›
I was impressed with this book. Charlene starts out with this thesis:
Open leadership is having the confidence and humility to give up the need to be in control while inspiring commitment from people to accomplish goals.
This is not just a paean to openness. First of all, Charlene makes the case that social technology gives customers and employees access to all sorts of power and information now, and more openness is the only response. And second, the book includes tools to help you, for example, assess your own level of openness and what your organization can tolerate.
I found some parts of the book a lot more useful or interesting than others. Here are three good parts.
1. Sandbox covenants. These are the rules organizations set up to determine what sorts of limits and conventions there are on openness. The book includes a link to social media policies of a bunch of corporations, not yet live, but I am looking forward to seeing that. This discussion, in Chapter 5, goes a long way to helping bridge the gap between social media backers within companies and corporate policymakers.
2. Organizational models for openness. Charlene describes three types of organization: organic, centralized, and coordinated, and shows when each one makes sense. Given all the questions I get these days about organization for social, this is quite relevant.
3. Leadership mindsets and traits. Chapter 7 classifies leaders according to whether they are optimistic or pessimistic, and whether they are independent or collaborative. Anyone who has ever had a boss will find this instructive. This is a fascinating way to look at leadership.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Every corporate head or leader of an organization should read this book if there are any reservations about using social media and achieving your bottom line. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Joyce
I got a promo on this book from Ms. Li. When I tried to unsubscribe from further unsolicited promos, I was told the address for unsubscribing was undeliverable. Read morePublished on January 23, 2014 by David Molmen
I haven't read much on social technology. This book seems to be outstanding with a very knowledgeable author who really knows the topic. Read morePublished on August 10, 2013 by Quantum Student
>>>..."BE OPEN, BE TRANSPARENT, BE AUTHENTIC are the current leadership mantras---but companies, organizations, etc. often push back... Read morePublished on October 9, 2012 by Michael GreenGold
Social technology is changing the face of business as it changes the core element at the heart of business: relationships. Read morePublished on September 28, 2012 by Rolf Dobelli
In one section of Open Leadership, author Charlene Li alludes to experience with a fearful, therefore miserable boss. Read morePublished on June 23, 2012 by Akweli Parker
"Charlene Li is co-author of great read, "Groundswell". She is a former Forrester Researcher...(No doubt, "Former Forrester" due to new book deal). Read morePublished on December 30, 2011 by Amazon Customer
If you love social media, you will love this book. It is specifically written to help you convince your boss and co-workers to adopt social media and to dream big about all it... Read morePublished on December 8, 2011 by Burgundy Damsel